DESIGNING AND PERFORMING A RESEARCH PROJECT IN BIOMEDICINE
Learning outcomes of the course unit
The objectives of the course with reference to the Dublin parameters are:
1) Knowledge and comprehension skills. The students will have to be able to understand all the factors influencing research/experiments, the methods for processing and presenting experimental results, and the criteria for writing different types of scientific manuscripts/proposals.
2) Capacity of applying knowledge and comprehension. The students will have to be able to apply the concepts and methods they have learned in order to (i) design the most appropriate experimental paradigms for human and animal research, (ii) conduct appropriate data analysis, and (iii) present experimental results.
3) Capacity of independent evaluation. The students will have to develop critical and independent evaluation skills in order to recognize what makes well-designed research and good quality scientific reports.
4) Communication skills. The students will have to be able to effectively present a scientific research in oral presentations as well as structure and write good quality scientific papers/projects.
5) Learning capacity. The students will have to be able to learn experimental approaches and procedures and methods for processing and presenting experimental results in biomedical research.
Course contents summary
This course is aimed at providing students with the skills needed to carry out good quality scientific research in biomedicine and communicate it effectively in various oral and written forms.
Introduction to biomedical research
Fundamental steps of the research process
Research methods: the choice of the appropriate design
Conducting research with human subjects: ethical considerations
Conducting research using animal models: choices, limitations, ethical issues
Some statistical methods in biomedical research
Structuring and writing a scientific report and article
Oral presentation of a scientific reseacrh
Writing proposals with impact. Where is biomedical research going (e.g. Horizon 2020)?
- Notes of the course given by the teacher
- Experimental Design for the Life Sciences (2006), G.D. Ruxton, N. Colegrave, Oxford Univ. Press ISBN 0-19-928511-2
- How to Write & Publish a Scientific Paper (1998) 5th Edition, R.A. Day Oryx Press, ISBN 1-57356-165-7
- Study and Communication Skills for the Biosciences (2009), S. Johnson & J. Scott, Oxford Univ. Press ISBN 978-0-19-921983-4
During frontal lessons the fundamental characteristics of basic and applied biomedical research will be discussed, as well as the experimental paradigms and data analysis methods that characterize human and animal research. This course will be integrated with group and individual activities with the aim of facilitating the development of skills in designing, analysing and presenting an experimental project.
Assessment methods and criteria
Learning assessment will be performed at the end of the course in two phases, during which students will be invited, respectively, to: (i) present and discuss a scientific study orally (one third of the final mark) and (ii) write and discuss a research project (two thirds of the final mark).